« He No Read So Good | Main | Don And I Have A Talk »

April 14, 2006

Comments

Jeff

Nicely put, but don't be so hard on Revelation. Not judging, being nice to the poor...boring! Revelation is where it's at. Fire! Blood! Whores! Locusts playing dress up! Lampstands! Easily the best book in the Bible.

Don Peter Mellon

I was like you once. Many years ago, I thought that Christianity was merely just another religion attempting to explain the mystery of this life. As I grew older, I began to think that Christianity was actually a philosophy of living rather than a philosophy of life, and in that regard, I became more tolerant of it. This is the stage you have reached.

Now, when you become old and truly wise, after many years of studying our history, you will understand that Christianity is the mortar of our civilization. It is the stuff that binds everything together—everything from our art and literature to our commerce and science. You will learn that our phenomenal success, our undoubted ascendance over all peoples and cultures, is the result of our belief in laws, first in the laws of God, next in the laws of Nature. We believe that if God’s laws can be written, God can be understood; and thus if Nature’s laws can be written, Nature can be understood. And from that belief, that article of faith, all our achievements have sprung. Everything we have comes from Christianity and is built upon our belief in the Word.

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
--John 1:1

Nancy

Excellent! I couldn't agree more...thanks for the message, buddy, and Happy Easter to you and your lovely wife.

Mark

In the beginning, man created god. Question is, was that overall a good thing or a bad thing? I wonder what the world would be like without Jesus, without religion. I suspect it would be just like it is now. People do what people do, and if they have religion they invoke their god, and if they don't, they do what they do anyway.

I think we might be better off if we had more than one god - monotheism is a curse, when you think about it. People with one god and one god only are far more inclined to want to impose that god on others. For all their faults, the Romans were tolerant of local religions in their colonies, and the system worked quite well. The Jews, with their one god only, got uppity, and then got thumped, but that is the exception.

My favorite quote on the subject: "With or without religion, good people can behave well and bad people can do evil; but for good people to do evil -- that takes religion." Stephen Weinberg

touchstone

Beautiful sentiments, Wulfgar! Makes me want to crack the ol' New Testament again. You did forget to mention all the socialist stuff.

BTW, to be argumentative with Don Peter Mellon because...well...it's my nature...

I doubt if Christianity has anything to do with the rise of Western Civ. I'm with Jared Diamond ("Guns, Germs, and Steel"): our success probably had to do with cows and geography. The religion just came along for the ride.

On the other hand, I do agree that Christianity is the "mortar" of our culture. It is the basis for our thought, government, legal system, etc...

Jon

Thanks for the call-out. But you know me better than that. The only reason I read the Bible is to be more effectively snarky when slapping around Christian idiots in on-line forums. When the main message of your deity's earthly manifestation is that hypocrites rot in hell, you give your opponents significant rhetorical advantage. But only if you've read the Bible it turns out.

"So....... I can only call you on your bullshit if I've read the Bible? Ummm.... Okay."

And even in 30 AD the ideas Jesus was talking about weren't that radical. He started a church. That's all. And any number of New Age-y pontificators could give Jesus a run for his money. For example the ideas of Siddhartha Gautama are much more radical, as well as being a better theology.

But I see where you're coming from as well. Happy Easter and all.

I do believe Christianity was "a" mortar for our civilization. But probably not as much as Confucianism, for example. And since most of our science, knowledge, and philosophy came from Islam and things like alchemy, I would lobby you that Christianity contributed the bad mortar rather than the good.

For example, I don't think you could argue that our culture (as opposed to our individual natures) was one of forgiveness, honesty, pacifism, charity, and asceticism. We keep hearing our leaders tell us that our culture is based on the rule of law. So we're much more about Hammurabi than Jesus. Right?

Eric Coobs

Most interesting post I've ever seen here.

You should live in my neighborhood, so you could discuss the Bible with the Jehovahs Witnesses.

The bible says that 144,000 virgin jewish males will be saved, from the original 12 tribes, and the Jehovahs are convinced that they will be the 144,000 annointed ones.

Wulfgar

Eric, I mean no personal offense at all by this, but there is *no* way I could stand to live in Billings. Perhaps someday I will visit, and we can get together for a beer. Strangely, I think I'd like that.

Eric Coobs

Heck - I'll even throw in a pork chop sandwich to go with it!

The comments to this entry are closed.

My Photo

Read This!

Friends like Family

Blog powered by Typepad